Waynesville Mayor Luge Hardman shared her thoughts on the progress the city has made this year and plans for 2017

 As 2016 comes to a close, the Daily Guide invited local leaders to discuss the last year and talk about their plans for the coming year. Waynesville mayor Luge Hardman talked about economic development in Waynesville and the city's recent move into the new Municipal Center, as well as the completion of some projects.

  Q:2017 is only a few days away, can you tell our readers something you would like to accomplish in your office in the coming year and why?

A: We have several big projects that we would like to complete in 2017. The main one, of course, would be the rebuilding of GW Lane Street in front of the high school and adding sidewalks there. We are also continuing to work on making Risky Road a reality. Another goal that I have, as mayor, is making Waynesville walkable and hopefully a sidewalk Grant is in our future for 2017.


Q: Did you get everything done in 2016 that you wanted to get done? If not, why not?

A:Yes we were very successful in 2016 accomplishing several large projects. And in fact for the last two years we have been involved in several big projects for the city.


Q:What are you most proud of accomplishing in 2016?

A: I am most proud of the fact that we were able to move into our new Municipal Center and the building of the Dyer Street Bridge. Waynesville has no low water crossings anymore and we are very proud of that. After the flood of 2013, the city embarked on six major mitigation projects and the Dyer Street Bridge was the last of those mitigation projects. We are very proud that we took advantage of FEMA and SEMA in correcting many problems and flooding issues within the city. 2017 will see the building of a detention area along the old outer road at the high school that will have a lasting impact on the neighborhood of Hull Valley Drive. We will be doing this project as partners with the school system.


Q:What do you believe will be the most challenging for your city in 2017 and how do you plan to tackle it?

A: The city is continuing to prepare our land on GW Lane Street to make it more marketable. We also hope to welcome the first tenant to the Waynesville Industrial Park. We are continuing Economic Development efforts in West Waynesville and in the downtown area.